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Double Shot of Renovation Shame Giving Chelsea a Bad Education

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Our Scaffolding Nightmare Investigative Patrol of Persistent Youngsters (S.N.I.P.P.Y.), aka Curbed interns, is bringing light to the darkest underbellies of unsightly construction. Got a scaffolding nightmare that needs investigating? Drop us a line at

Reader Report: "I walk through scaffolding hell every day in Chelsea. West 18th between 8th & 9th is a double scaffolding nightmare. There are public schools on both sides of the street that have been undergoing renovation since at least last year with no signs of ever being done. Not only is there a roof of scaffolding over each sidewalk for most of the length of each block, but now they've enclosed the sides in metal sheeting as well. It's like walking down a tunnel. It might raise the righteous hackles of a few Curbed readers."

S.N.I.P.P.Y. Investigation: The scaffolding and sidewalk sheds do indeed make a rather dark and depressing scene here, complete with the mineshaft-style lighting we've come to expect from true nightmares. But this one also has a bonus Port-O-Potty! Surely there's light at the end of the tunnel?


There's also a lovely plastic lawn chair halfway down the block with what looks like a bundle of belongings nestled beside it. It's almost like poolside at Soho House, minus the mojitos and Jay-Z sightings. Can this truly be a nightmare with such fancy accommodations?

Although the "tunnel" is rather bleak, S.N.I.P.P.Y. found this little spark of life in a classroom window. Inspirational!

If it's any consolation to our Curbed tipster, perhaps these contraptions are more temporary than they are appear, seeing as many of the adjoining poles are layered in duct tape. Or maybe it'll just fall on your head.

As for the Nightmare Index for this particular case, S.N.I.P.P.Y. can only award 2 out of 5 Freddy Kruegers because although hobos have made this dark passage their own, there's a pleasant absence of graffiti. Class dismissed!

?S.N.I.P.P.Y. investigation conducted by Zoe Katleman
· Scaffolding Nightmares [Curbed]